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Tuesday, March 5, 2013
Watch List DE speaks with his play

By Chantel Jennings

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Watch List defensive end Lorenzo Featherston (Greensboro, N.C./Page) is a man of few words. He avoids limelight and attention. He doesn’t get in anyone’s face. He keeps to himself.

If he weren’t pushing 6-foot-8, he could probably slip through most days unnoticed.

“When you put that film in and you see a guy that’s that long and lanky and you see he’s got broad shoulders, big ol’ feet and hands, you can see he could pack on weight,” Page coach Kevin Gillespie said. “You see the things that he can do on the field now and the potential, it’s just unbelievable.”

That play and potential already have earned Featherston 12 offers, and the number seems to climb by the week. Michigan, Notre Dame and Florida State have thrown their hats in. Alabama, Florida and Ohio State have all been in touch with Gillespie, with possible offers on the horizon.

But if there’s one aspect that Gillespie wants to see more out of his rangy defensive end, it’s maturity. Featherston is still only 16, which is younger than most juniors, and occasionally that comes through in his play.

“He’s going to have to mature a bit all the way around,” Gillespie said. “And when he does that, when that light bulb finally comes on, he’ll be a freak.”

At 220 pounds, Featherston is very thin, but his time of 4.83 seconds in the 40-yard dash is no joke. He uses his speed and quickness to get to ball carriers, and his wing span helps him become the rangiest player on the field. Gillespie jokes that Featherston can scratch his own knees standing up straight.

“His length is an asset,” Gillespie said. “He has got good explosion for his size. He has good speed and quickness. He can do some things that usually kids at his age just can’t do.”

Featherston recorded the best vertical leap of any 2014 defensive end in the country so far, 38.2 inches.

So given all that and his laundry list of offers, Featherston could easily be boastful, but he just isn’t.

“He is not a rah-rah guy, not a talker,” Gillespie said. “He just goes out and tries to play hard.”

Gillespie said Featherston is wide open to every school and every offer. At this point, he doesn’t have any leaders and has no criteria for distance from home or size of the program.

He’s just interested to hear each school’s pitch, and if he has any questions, he’ll ask them. That might be the most anyone hears from Featherston throughout his recruitment.

“He’s a very laid-back guy, doesn’t have a whole lot to say,” Gillespie said. “He’s a very nice kid. He has a great personality and smiles all the time. But he just doesn’t talk much.”